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Policy: Entitlements

VIDEO: Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett's pension problem

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Steve Doty,Entitlements,Budgets and Deficits,Video,Tom Corbett,Pennsylvania,Pensions

Amid intraparty fighting over the state budget and skyrocketing pensions threatening serious fiscal harm, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett's campaign has released a new campaign ad targeting the pension crisis.

"We don't have a crisis here and it's not really a pension issue," the video shows Corbett's Democratic challenger, Tom Wolf saying.

The ad, 'See No Evil', was released this week on the same day Gov. Corbett approved part of a $29.1 billion state spending plan while vetoing $72 million in an attempt to put additional pressure on the statehouse to pass pension reform.

"They filled the budget with discretionary spending and then refused to deal with the biggest fiscal challenge facing Pennsylvania, our unsustainable public pension system," Corbett said. "For these reasons I am forcing mutual sacrifice with the general assembly through the governor's ability to line-item veto."

Gov. Corbett is running for re-election and his campaign said Thursday the pension deficit, if left unaddressed, could lead to a credit downgrade for the Keystone state and could add additional strain to future budgets.

Corbett's decision to veto $72 million from the budget was met with a flurry of sharp criticism from both the left and right. Republican leaders in the general assembly accused the Republican governor of playing party politics with the state's budget and holding up critical state programs.

And in an election year where Corbett is already trailing Democrat Tom Wolf by 22 points, intraparty fighting is the last thing the Republican needs. So Corbett will look to change the narrative with campaign ads accusing Tom Wolf of not understanding the issues inside the State House, but if Corbett can't make up 22 points by November, he'll be a one-term governor on the outside looking in the next time there's a budget battle.

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Author:

Steve Doty

Senior Video Journalist/WEXTv Coordinator
The Washington Examiner

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